If last weekend is any indication of what to expect from the offense of the San Francisco 49ers, the Atlanta Falcons will need all of the help they can get in Sunday’s 2013 NFC Championship game on defense. After shutting the Seattle Seahawks out in the first half of the Division Round, Atlanta’s defense struggled in the second half to contain Russell Wilson and company as they allowed 28 points–barely holding on to the win as Matt Bryant kicked the game-winning field goal with eight seconds left.
This week, the Falcons will be challenged even more as they attempt to contain Colin Kaepernick, who is coming off a record-breaking performance against the Green Bay Packers in which he rushed for 181 yards to go along with two touchdowns. However, it looks like Atlanta will have one of their best defenders on the field in John Abraham after his status for Sunday’s game was in jeopardy.
The star linebacker was forced to sit out in the second half of Sunday’s game against the Seahawks with an ankle injury, and now that he’s expected to play against the 49ers, things may be more difficult for Kaepernick and company on offense. Despite a quiet December, Abraham is coming off another impressive season with Atlanta after recording 10 sacks to go along with six forced fumbles, and the Falcons hope his presence can make a difference on Sunday.
They may have home-field advantage, but Atlanta realizes they’ll need all of the help in the world against San Francisco if they’re going to have any shot at representing the NFC in the Super Bowl–which is why hopefully having Abraham in the lineup will help.